Sturm Panzer MEGA-REVIEW: Eclipse Ogre, Leo Sniper MK II (both colors) *UPDATE*


#1

Sturm Panzer: 2014 Lineup

Sturm Panzer is a relatively unknown Japanese yo-yo brand who have been releasing high quality 7075/brass bimetal yo-yos for about a year and a half. So far they have released five models, along with several variations of these models. Sturm Panzer has an interesting approach when it comes to yo-yos. Each yo-yo is released with a unique manga. The manga tell the story of a new 21st century sport called “Yo-yo fist,” which I believe is a combination of yo-yo competition and combat. They focus on Team Sturm Panzer and each manga focuses on a different character using a different yo-yo (the same yo-yo sold with manga). In general Sturm Panzer designs the yo-yos, which are then machined by Japanese manufacturer YoYo Laboratory. Sturm Panzer then sells the yo-yos as part of their manga.


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Unfortunately for most of us here, the printed manga are entirely in Japanese, but the artwork is quite good. In addition, they are being translated one at a time into English by a Hawaiian player fluent in both languages. So far the first 2 of 5 have been translated and are available as PDFs at Sturm Panzer’s website. The rest (manga for Schneider, Eclipse Ogre Luna and Eclipse Ogre Ray) have not yet been translated but will eventually be available on the Sturm Panzer website, with the Schneider translation expected sometime in June.
As an interesting footnote, I’m told by the manufacturer that the inspiration for one of the characters in the Eclipse Ogre manga, Shinya Kuragumo, is none other than Shinya Kido, 2009 1A World Champion.

Sturm Panzer yo-yos can be purchased either from a specific major international site or directly from Sturm Panzer’s “Direct Base.” Since their website is all in Japanese, the easiest way to order directly is by email. I have ordered by both email and through the international retailer. I’m not allowed to post links here, so if you have trouble finding these sites please PM me and I will tell you where you can buy Sturm Panzer yo-yos.

I was recently able to purchase the 3A set DX-06 as well as the brand new, super light Leo Sniper MK II. Both are phenomenal for entirely different reasons. I will be reviewing both in the two following posts.

But first…to show you how different the Eclipse Ogre and 2014 Leo Sniper MK II are visually, here are some pics of my high-end purchases of the last six months lined up from left to right according to increasing width, diameter, and weight, respectively, from top to bottom.

  • Row 1 (-> width L to R)–SP Leo Sniper MK II (2014), YYR Laser, SP Eclipse Ogre Ray, YYM Agonist, TP Prominence, YYR Draupnir, Auldey Ares Star

  • Row 2 (-> diameter L to R)–YYM Agonist, SP Leo Sniper MK II (2014), YYR Laser, YYR Draupnir, TP Prominence, SP Eclipse Ogre Ray, Auldey Ares Star

  • Row 3 (-> weight L to R)–SP Leo Sniper MK II (2014), YYM Agonist, YYR Draupnir, YYR Laser, TP Prominence, Auldey Ares Star, SP Eclipse Ogre Ray


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EDIT: The color looks a little washed out in some of the pics below because in most I wasn’t using the flash. In real life the colors are brighter and look more like the pics I posted above (especially the Eclipse Ogre).


#2

Sturm Panzer DX-06 Eclipse Ogre Luna and Ray (3A set)


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The Eclipse Ogre can be purchased either individually, in the purple (Luna = Left) version or the green (Ray = Right) version, or as a 3A set. Buying them individually is much more expensive, as the only site that sells them (the international retailer) prices them at $180 each. I’m not saying they aren’t worth that, and it might be better for an amateur 1A or 5A player to just buy one for $180, but it’s much cheaper per yo-yo if you buy the DX-06 set, which includes Luna and Ray, and costs 24000 yen for both of them. And unlike many 3A sets, which are released as outlet versions, the DX-06 3A set is NOT an outlet version. The quality is just as good as if you bought them individually. I bought the set but will be reviewing the yo-yo as just the “Eclipse Ogre.” The yo-yos are identical and as such I’m keeping one in mint condition and practicing with the Ray, so most of my pictures are of the Ray, although I have some pics of both.


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The Eclipse Ogre was released in early 2014 and is essentially a refinement of the Stealth Ogre. It’s a 7075/brass bimetal with a very unique look and feel. Below are the specs:

Release year: 2014
Weight: 66.83g / 70.11g / 71.84g (without mirror caps / with mirror caps / with Yoyojam Lateral Caps)
Diameter: 58.06mm
Width: 40.67mm
Trapeze Width: 39mm
Body Material: 7075 Aluminum
Rim Material: Brass
Bearing: Concave 10-ball size C bearing
Response: IrPad


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The main changes from the Stealth Ogre are an increased diameter, decreased width, decreased body weight, increased weight with caps, use of mirror caps, compatibility with YoyoJam Lateral Caps, and better build quality. These changes, like increasing the diameter:width ratio have made the Eclipe Ogre even more of a spin beast than the Stealth Ogre, and more appropriate for 5A and (especially) 3A. The machining is noticeably improved and all released Eclipse Ogres are A grade. An especially interesting change is compatibility with Yoyojam Lateral Caps. The Eclipse Ogre is compatible with both Type 1 and Type 2 caps, though I am told Type 1 are harder to install. I have tried just the Type 2 and they are super easy to install but hard to get out. Luckily they are very cheap, so the worst case scenario if I wish to remove them (which I don’t think I will) is that I can cut them out.


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Pros

  • Price–At 24000 yen for the set, that’s roughly $120 each for two high performance 7075/brass bimetals. It would be a good buy at $180 (the individual price) but the 3A set is priced phenomenally. I just couldn’t pass it up.

  • Comfort–The Eclipse Ogre is super comfortable in the hand. The V-cut is wide enough to accommodate a 5A grip as well as a 1A grip. It’s one of the more comfortable throws I have, though not as comfortable as the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II.

  • Customization–I liked the overall feel of the yo-yo best as it came, with the mirror caps. I feel the yo-yo is best balanced that way. The mirror caps are covered with plastic protectors, but I was still worried about damaging mine as a 5A player, so I immediately removed them, using the provided suction cup (which is quite strong), after performing a sleep test. This lightened the yo-yo by several grams and opened up the possibility of finger spin tricks. I feel some stability and spin time are lost (not a lot) but the yo-yo becomes dead smooth. For some it may be worth the compromise. Personally, I like using the YYJ lateral caps. With the lateral caps (which cost like $3 for a pair) the Eclipse Ogre will spin even longer and has about the same stability as with the mirror caps. But it has the huge advantage of allowing for super easy finger spins, as well as just looking cool. I like the heaviness of the yo-yo and feel it makes it a real beast (though not a hard-to-control beast).

  • Spin Times–The Eclipse Ogre (with lateral caps and probably with mirror caps) sleeps longer than any yo-yo I own, including several other high end Japanese throws like the Draupnir and Laser. My previous sleep record was about 8.5 minutes with an Ares Star using a YYF Gold Center Trac. With the default bearing I was able to almost beat the record in just one attempt (got a bit over 8 minutes), but after swapping in a YYF Gold Center Trac, and then an NSK Platinum, the Eclipse Ogre crushed my previous record. In one try with each bearing I was able to get a little over 10 minutes. The times were too close to even bother differentiating. And this was with used bearings. With a fresh NSK or YYF Gold Center Trac, I’d expect to get another 1 - 3 minutes.

Of course, how long a yo-yo will sleep hanging on the end of the string is not that important for everyday play. But in everyday play you will also get superb combo times with the Eclipse Ogre. It’s a very unresponsive yo-yo and even doing a quadruple trapeze sleep test I could get over a minute (compare Draupnir–under 10 seconds). This is a good yo-yo for long combos involving multilayer string tricks but can handle other styles quite well.

  • Stability–The Eclipse Ogre is also the most stable yo-yo I’ve used. This is due to the weight distribution and diameter:width ratio I expect. It’s more stable when used with mirror caps or lateral caps than without. It takes a bit of effort to get this yo-yo to tilt (unless thrown horizontally). And for 5A tricks, the stability makes many tricks easier, such as those involving midair transitions like Meltdown as the yo-yo barely moves frontward/backward even with sloppy technique. The weight does make some tricks harder, though (like Bee Sting IMO).

  • Controllability–This goes a lot with stability but this is a very easy to control yo-yo due to the weight. It moves slowly and is not affected as much by unintentional hand motions so it’s pretty forgiving.

  • Response–Sturm Panzer does use IrPads. But they are .5mm IrPads instead of 1mm ones. This makes their yo-yos more unresponsive than many of their competitors. I consider this an advantage as it allows for more complex string tricks and the yo-yo has never had any unintentional binds. However, if you like yo-yos a bit more responsive, the Eclipse Ogre comes standard with two .3mm shims, so you can just remove them. In addition a thicker string will of course make the yo-yo more responsive. I should note that hand starts are relatively difficult due to the unresponsiveness, but with practice are possible.

  • No Vibe–There is no noticeable vibe in my Eclipse Ogre. With the mirror caps in you can hear something you might think is vibe but it’s just the spin of the mirror caps. It’s the same with the lateral caps. With no caps in it’s as smooth as a Draupnir. It’s also super quiet (with the right bearing of course).

  • Default bearing–It’s a concave 10-ball that’s actually quite good. I think it easily rivals the Konkave bearing. Word of warning though: it’s SUPER hard to remove, even with a YYF multitool. I had to unscrew the axle with pliers and then it took me about 20 minutes to get it off. I may have damaged the default bearing in the process. I’d recommend something with more leverage like the yoyomonster bearing removal tool. The YYF multitool has almost no leverage AND can’t slide over axles well.

  • Finger spins–With the Lateral Caps this is the easiest yo-yo I have to do finger spins (it’s the only one in fact where I can do them with any consistency). And I have a Movitation, a Prominence, etc., yo-yos specifically designed to make finger spins easier. I super suck at horizontal tricks, but the Eclipse Ogre doesn’t spin out as fast as most others I’ve tried when attempting them, so I’m also going to venture a guess that it’s good at horizontals.

  • Looks–The Eclipse Ogre Luna and Ray are in my opinion the prettiest yo-yos I have seen. The design is elegant, the anodization is vibrant and lustrous, and the mirror caps give it a look not much seen anymore. And the machining is perfect. In some of the pics it looks like the brass is bumpy around the edges, but it isn’t–it’s just a byproduct of the light. The entire yo-yo is flawless. Throw in some manga and you have some really cool yo-yos.

  • Fun Factor–The Eclipse Ogre’s got the fun factor. The unique feel and powerful spin make it hard to put down. Not quite as hard to put down as the 2014 Leo Sniper MKII, but I absolutely love both these yo-yos. And I’d rather play with them than my other throws. And it’s not just a “honeymoon phase.” I’m usually over the “honeymoon phase” with my yo-yos in a few hours. I’ve played with the Eclipse Ogre and 2014 Leo Sniper MK II for probably 30 hours now and I still love them.

Cons

  • Heavy–This is totally a matter of preference, but some people will find these way too heavy. I don’t think with the mirror caps it’s an ideal competition yo-yo but on the other hand it is quite unique. I don’t mind the heaviness and my arm doesn’t get tired from throwing a few extra grams. If it’s a problem, removing the caps brings the weight more into common levels.

  • Slow–The Eclipse Ogre is a lumbering beast, though more finely controlled than its predecessor the Stealth Ogre. Depending on your style this could be a con. I do mostly 5A and I actually like this for 5A but the slowness makes some tricks look a lot less impressive. On the other hand the increased stability makes others easier. And again you can remove the caps to make it faster if you wish, at the loss of some spin time and stability. Whatever your preference.

  • Unresponsive–I know I listed unresponsiveness as a plus but this yo-yo is relatively hard to bind, compared to snappy yo-yos like Draupnir. You need to feed it a lot of string to get a solid bind. It’s not hard for anyone with experience, but I wouldn’t recommend it for someone just starting with unresponsive yo-yos, who hasn’t gotten the throw and bind down. Also, you can increase response by removing the .3mm shims or using thicker string. To me it is not an issue. I just list this since some players prefer really snappy binds. I don’t really consider it a con–but some might.

  • Finger spins–I listed this as a plus as well, but without a 3rd party accessory or removing the mirror caps finger spins aren’t possible. I recommend adding the lateral caps anyway, so to me this is not a con, but it is an extra $3, and if you choose to remove the caps altogether you sacrifice some spin time and stability for the ability to do finger spins (among other things).

Conclusion

The Eclipse Ogre is a tremendous improvement over the Stealth Ogre. It’s fun, its performance is customizable, and it is unique. It would make an excellent 3A yo-yo and would fit certain styles of 1A and 5A as well. If you are looking for just another 66/55/43 type yo-yo, then look elsewhere. But if you want a fun, inexpensive bimetal that not only performs well but is unlike (probably) anything you’ve ever thrown, check it out! I seriously, seriously doubt you’ll be disappointed.

Oh, and you get to learn some extra cool yo-yo fighting techniques and other weirdness.


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#3

Sturm Panzer SY-002 Leo Sniper MK II (2014 version)


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There have been numerous versions of the Leo Sniper made–something like six if you count the OEM. The newest (dark blue version) is approximately 3 grams lighter than its 2013 predecessor (light blue version). For its size, the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II is incredibly light. Sturm Panzer accomplished this by using an ultra-thin shell of 7075 aluminum stabilized by two large brass weight rings. And holy crap is it light! Below are the specs:

Release Year: 2014
Mass: 59.74g
Diameter: 56.02mm
Width: 40.00mm
Trapeze Width: 39mm
Body Material: 7075 Aluminum
Rim Material: Brass
Bearing: Concave size D bearing
Response: IrPad


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The main things to notice from the specs are the 3 gram drop in mass from the previous light blue version, the high diameter:width ratio, the IrPad response, and the D-sized bearing. This version only comes in one color, a deep blue. From pictures I saw online I didn’t think I would like the color, but once I saw it in person I thought it was beautiful. It should also be noted Sturm Panzer is no longer producing the light blue ~62g version, though there are still a few left at the international retailer if someone wanted to pick one up.

Pros

  • Price–Priced at 15,800 yen this yo-yo is about 4,000-8,000 yen cheaper than yo-yos of similar build quality and performance (think Yoyorecreation, Turning Point). You’re getting a 7075/brass bimetal with perfect build quality, PLUS a manga, for 15,800 yen. It’s a great deal.

  • Fast Play–This is easily the fastest yo-yo I have ever thrown. I suspect for its size it is one of the fastest yo-yos available. The super-low weight, combined with the low width make speedy, intricate string tricks a breeze. It plays even faster than Yoyomonster’s Agonist, by a wide margin!

  • High RPMs–The low overall weight, high concentration of rim weight (the brass rings make up something like half the mass of the yo-yo), high diameter:width ratio, and the use of a D-sized bearing all make the new Leo Sniper MK II generate insanely high RPMs. It takes very little effort to get the yo-yo up to speed. The initially high RPMs help to increase the sleep time, which would otherwise be brought down by the low weight of the yo-yo.

  • Spin Time–Despite the low weight of the yo-yo, it still achieves excellent spin times due to the extreme rim weight, the high diameter:width ratio, and the use of a D-bearing. A solid throw starts at much higher RPMs than normal, so even though the RPMs slow down faster compared to, say, a Draupnir (C-bearing yo-yo), it doesn’t affect the time you can spend doing combos. I was able to throw a 7 minute sleeper on my first attempt, which quite surprised me given the weight of the yo-yo and the fact I was using the default bearing. I did notice, however, that once it reaches fairly low RPMs, it starts to slow down faster than most C-bearing yo-yos. So if you see the RPMs start to get low, you need to bind quickly. But this issue should NOT affect normal play. In fact, when doing multi-layer string tricks, the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II will sleep LONGER than anything else I’ve tried. I did several simple tests comparing it to a Draupnir. While the Draupnir will sleep longer if just hanging there, when doing a double, triple, or quadruple trapeze, the Leo Sniper MK II blows it away. I was EASILY able to get over a minute of sleep time with the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II on a QUADRUPLE trapeze (7 layers of string under the bearing), and still bind successfully. The Draupnir spun out after about 8 seconds on a quadruple trapeze, and about 10 seconds on a triple trapeze. And the Draupnir also had a superior bearing!

  • Response–The new Leo Sniper MK II comes installed with IrPads. They are quite thin, however. Sturm Panzer uses .5mm IrPads while most companies use 1mm response pads. This can be good or bad depending on your preferences, but if you like your yo-yos dead unresponsive, it is a very good thing. Personally I find yo-yos like the Draupnir to be a little too bindy. I often find when doing lacerations or other tricks I end up accidentally binding the yo-yo. This has never happened with the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II. Despite this, it is quite easy to bind the yo-yo. It will bind even at very low RPMs because of the low weight, as long as you feed it enough string. This makes hand starts a breeze. I’m not very good at hand starts, and the only yo-yos I can do them consistently on at the moment are the Draupnir (since it binds so tight) and 2014 Leo Sniper MK II (due to super low weight), but with the latter yo-yo it is even easier.

  • No Vibe–Earlier Sturm Panzer models like the Stealth Ogre produced large incidences of A- and B grade products. It was fairly common to see a large amount of vibe in regularly priced products. Recently Sturm Panzer and Yoyo Laboratory have stepped up their game. The 2014 Leo Sniper MK II has NO DETECTABLE VIBE. It is just as smooth as my other dead smooth throws, including the Draupnir and Ares Star. And with a clean bearing it is the quietest yo-yo I have ever thrown. The fact that there is no vibe on a bimetal yo-yo with these specs is incredible, because even slight manufacturing problems on bimetals will lead to small amounts of wobbling/blur/vibe, and it tends to get worse the more the weight is focused in the rings. But the 2014 Leo Sniper MK II nailed it.

  • Looks–It’s not the prettiest yo-yo I’ve ever seen, but the design is both elegant and understated, and the blue anodization looks fantastic. I’ve noticed zero anodization flaws. The brass rings come super shiny, until you smudge them up with fingerprints. The yo-yo comes with a brass polishing cloth to wipe away fingerprints, but don’t use it on the anodized section. Note the kind of blurry spots around the brass edges you see in the pictures—these are not flaws in the brass. It’s just the effect of shadows and the shininess of the brass. The brass is perfect.

  • Comfort–This is one of the most comfortable yo-yos I’ve ever thrown (easily Top 2). I have small hands but the comfort issues I’ve had with other yo-yos like the Laser or the Prominence I expect would be even worse for people with large hands. The 2014 Leo Sniper MK II fits in the hand perfectly. It’s comfortable to throw in 1A, and comfortable for 5A as well.

  • Finger spins–The shape is completely adequate for finger spins (though not IDEAL), but I’d suggest wearing some nylon gloves as the Sturm Panzer “buttons” have a high coefficient of friction.

  • Fun factor–This is the most fun yo-yo I’ve had. Usually when I get a new yo-yo I’ll play with it for about 2 - 3 hours and then do something else. When I got this one in the mail I ended up practicing for almost 7 hours, which is unheard of for me. I think the fact it is so comfortable, light, and speedy, combine to make it fun to play for many hours.

Cons

  • Stability–I wouldn’t call this yo-yo unstable by any means, but it is less stable than most of my other high-end throws. This is an inherent problem in yo-yos so lightweight, but Sturm Panzer did a good job compensating by use of the heavy weight rings. The yo-yo just tends to tilt to the side quite easily if your technique is sloppy. It’s less forgiving than something like the Draupnir or Eclipse Ogre.

  • Controllability–It’s hard to control yo-yos this light. By this I mean if your technique is sloppy, the yo-yo will tend not only to tilt, but may start rocking forward and backward when doing pinwheel like motions. I found this especially an issue for 5A. After doing mid-air transitions like with the Meltdown trick, the yo-yo tends to rock forward and backward making it easy for the counterweight to miss the yo-yo gap. However, this is more a problem of the thrower than the yo-yo. Heavy yo-yos tend to mask sloppy play. This yo-yo is less forgiving, which is just a result of basic physics. If an object is hanging on a string affixed to a wobbling object (a hand), then the lighter the object, the more slight wobbles in the hand will translate into movements in the object. Personally, I don’t find this issue much of a con, because it helps me notice where I’m being sloppy and how I can improve my technique. But it does make certain tricks more difficult, and this probably wouldn’t be my first choice at a competition (unless I were way, way better).

  • D-sized bearing–This isn’t a con in itself, but the fact is there aren’t many D-sized bearings available on the market these days. Some of the best bearings I’ve used (NSK Gold, NSK Platinum, YYF Gold Centertrac) cannot be used on this yo-yo. However, there ARE good bearings available, like the Dif-e-yo Konkave, the Yoyorecreation Double Straight, some of the Terrapin X bearings, and various generic bearings, such as the one that comes with the yo-yo, which is actually quite good. To me the pros of a D-size bearing outweigh the negatives of D-bearing scarcity, but I can see this potentially being an issue for someone with a collection of C-size bearing yo-yos who doesn’t want to shell out more money on D-size bearings, or who has come to love a particular C-size bearing.

Conclusion

The 2014 Leo Sniper MK II is the most fun yo-yo I’ve ever thrown. It’s speedy, it’s comfortable, it’s unresponsive, it’s light, it has great sleep times even with the default bearing, and it is just plain hard to put down. I’m not a competitive player myself, but judging from the specs and the 15 or so hours I’ve spent with it so far, I would say this would make an excellent competition yo-yo for 1A players with a speedy, technical style involving complex string tricks. The diameter/width specs are also typical of many 3A and 5A yo-yos. I’m garbage at 3A, but with the narrow width, easy ability to generate spin, and easy binds, I think this would probably make a great 3A yo-yo. I play mostly 5A myself. I would not recommend this for the purpose of learning 5A since it is relatively hard to control, but for a more advanced player it certainly has its advantages. For instance, I find the counterweight is easier to control than with a heavier yo-yo. That’s because typically a counterweight has mass about 1/6 of the yo-yo (11 g counterweight with 66g yo-yo), while here the same counterweight has a mass close to 1/5 of the yo-yo. This makes some tricks easier due to the light weight while others are harder. In the end it comes down to your style and preference, but I can’t imagine anyone buying this yo-yo and not liking it, regardless of whether you play 1A/3A/5A.

As such I highly, highly recommend the 2014 Leo-Sniper MK II. It’s a truly unique yo-yo with many great qualities. And it is ADDICTIVE.

If I had to go with just one of the Eclipse Ogre or 2014 Leo Sniper MK II…I’d probably get the new Leo Sniper. I find it slightly more fun than the Eclipse Ogre but love both of them. So better yet, get both. I did, and I’m not disappointed (despite in general being prone to buyer’s remorse). They complement each other. The Eclipse Ogre is a slow, heavy brute and the new Leo Sniper is light, floaty, and fast. They both deviate from yo-yo norms, which is why they’re such great additions to one’s collection. Both come highly recommended.


Sturm Panzer SY-002 Leo Sniper MK II (2013 version)


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I picked up one of the few remaining 2013 (light blue) versions of the Leo Sniper MK II primarily so I could compare it to the newer version. I’ll be posting some pics, the specs, and some thoughts on how the models compare, but won’t be doing a full point-by-point review due to redundancy. There is quite a bit of difference in play between the two versions, however. Below are the specs:

Release Year: 2013
Mass: 62.68g
Diameter: 56.02mm
Width: 40.00mm
Trapeze Width: 39mm
Body Material: 7075 Aluminum
Rim Material: Brass
Bearing: Concave size D bearing
Response: IrPad


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Comparisons

The light blue version looks almost turquoise in person, and the dark blue version looks almost purple. Granted I’m a little colorblind, but whereas on website pictures I found I thought the light blue color looked a lot better, in person I found both colors beautiful and have no real preference in that regard.

According to my scale, which has .01g precision, the difference in mass between the new dark blue version and the previous light blue version is 62.68g - 59.74g = 2.94g. So there’s about a 3 gram difference in mass. I couldn’t visibly detect any difference in shape between the two versions, either on the body or the rings, so I’m not sure exactly how this magic was achieved, but the scales don’t lie, and there is a noticeable difference in feel to how the two versions play, much more so than one would find between a 68g and a 65g yo-yo in my opinion.

The overall list of pros/cons applies to both versions–the differences are the degrees to which they apply. As one would expect, although the light blue version is fast, the dark blue version is even faster. The light blue is a bit more stable. It’s noticeably easier to control but there is not a huge difference. It takes a little less effort to reach high RPMs with the dark blue, but spin dies down a bit faster, so that for overall sleep times these two factors almost cancel each other out. The light blue sleeps just a tiny bit longer when hanging on a string, but not enough to make any difference in play, as I could notice no difference in combo times.

Although I’ve heard Sturm Panzer’s quality control has gotten better over time, and that their earliest models were sometimes prone to having small amounts of vibe, the light blue Leo Sniper MK II that I received plays with no detectable vibe. Now this could just mean I wasn’t unlucky, but I think most reported vibe problems were associated specifically with the first two yo-yos produced, the extremely heavy Stealth Ogre and its prototype. I would be surprised if any of the 4 remaining light blue versions available (at the time this was written) had any vibe, but since Sturm Panzer reports the incidence of non A grades is lower with dark blue versions, there may be a slight risk.

So, which version is better? Honestly I don’t know. I feel that the light blue version is a little less “extreme” in its specs–it’s less than a gram lighter than a Draupnir, for instance–but that Sturm Panzer knew where to stop when decreasing the mass of the dark blue versions. With the dark blue version, they made a yo-yo about as fast as possible while still maintaining enough stability to be playable. If you are accustomed to heavier yo-yos, you may be better off with a light blue version. It is probably a little easier to use competitively. In addition, if you wish to get both versions, it would be better to buy the light blue version first since Sturm Panzer no longer produces it and it may not be available at the major international site much longer. With all those caveats aside, I still find I have a slight preference for the dark blue version. While both versions are fun, the extreme speediness of the dark blue version makes it truly unique, and I find myself reaching for it a little more often.

Left: Team Sturm Panzer                                Right: Yo-yo Combat and Design


https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2915/14150553669_d9383aa8c8_o.jpg

https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5523/14150554859_a8db5187ab_o.jpg

                                           KAPOW!


#4

Excellent reviews! Thanks!


#5

I enjoyed the review immensely. I don’t want to comment on it really, except to say that I am addicted to Sturm Panzer. Their yoyos are the most incredibly fun throws, the Stealth/Eclipse Ogres affording you an age to learn that new trick you’ve been struggling over, and the Leo Mk II is a bullet. And much improved over the original. Everyone should get one. Theyyyy’rrreeee great!


#6

I finally fixed the image alignment issues. For some reason when previewing a post, you can use images taking up to 892 pixels width total, but when actually posting them the total is limited to 733 pixels. Anyway, make sure to click on the images to check out some higher resolution versions, as well as some others I took but didn’t post.

And thanks for the comments everyone! I’d appreciate constructive criticism of the reviews themselves, also, since these are the first I’ve posted here.


#7

One of the best reviews I’ve ever read. Fantastic amount of detail and clear, crisp photos.

I’ve been very interested in the Leo Sniper Mark II recently, and have been hunting around for reviews, so it’s very handy to have this so well written out. Definately given me a lot of details to think about. :slight_smile:

I have to agree about the snappiness of the Draupnir response. I know the golden “Attuned” version had a larger gap, which sounds great to me since I use thicker string and have had my Draupnir kiss my knuckles many a time.

Gotta admit, that manga is a bit… strange looking… but I guess that’s the Manga way.

Many thanks for taking all the time out to write this up mate. :smiley:


#8

Great reviews, now I have to pretend I never read them, because my wallet’s too light already! =D


#9

Super review! Amazing detail and great pictures.

I sure appreciate the time you took to share this with us. Mega-good job :slight_smile:


#10

Thanks for the support everyone! It did take a lot longer than I thought to do the reviews (all the photographing, editing to correct sizes, and formatting the post took longer than the actual review part) but Sturm Panzer is just way too good and way too underexposed on this forum.

I’ll try to put up some reviews of some of my other relatively obscure Japanese yo-yos later but can’t promise they’ll be as thorough :wink:


#11

P.S. that international site I can’t mention has Eclipse Ogres and Leo Sniper MK II’s for $153 and $144.50 respectively, for the next few days (entire stock 15% off basically).

Good opportunity to save $20-30 here :slight_smile:

I’m considering getting a light blue Leo-Sniper for comparison purposes.


#12

Third post has been updated with pictures, along with my impressions of the light blue version of the Leo Sniper MK II, which I received several days ago.

If anyone needs help locating any of these yo-yos, please don’t hesitate to PM me.

EDIT: Moved some images around as one was considered sketchy.


#13

So close to pulling the trigger. haha. Great reviews Shai!


#14

The major international retailer just got a restock of Sturm Panzer. They have both versions of Leo Sniper MK II in stock for $170 and have the Eclipse Ogre 3A set for $280.

It’s cheaper to order the set direct (24000 yen) but once you factor in shipping there’s not as big a difference (25500 yen).

Get one. You know you want to. DO IT.


#15

Thanks Shai Hulud !
These review is greatful.

SY-002 LEO SNIPER MK-2 is very light weight.
Light Blue color is about 62.5[g].
New Blue color is about 60[g] .
By the way, Old model LEO SNIPER is about 66[g].

People is thinking that “The weight of Yo-Yo is around 65[g], that is best-weight”.
However, STURM PANZER must break to Common-Ssense pf people.
Because if we didn’t try to make New-Theory Yo-Yos, the market of Yo-Yo is not economic growth.

SY-002 LEO SNIPER MK-2 is mounted Size-D bearing. (hspin size)
STURM PANZER thinks that Size-D bearing is superior to other sizes. (Future prediction of 2014 or later.)
There are 3 reasons.
https://scontent-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpa1/t1.0-9/10409788_1452047195041524_8160785160923984393_n.jpg
(This picture is any Yo-Yo mounted size-D bearing.)

The one of reason is that Spining-Power is stronger than other sizes.
Combination of Bi-Metal(A7075 and Brass) and size-D bearing makes both spin and speed.

But Yo-yo in the bonus, Storybook is the main contents!
You can read STORYBOOk ENGLISH Ver. (Now STORYBOOK#2 only.)
http://sturm-panzer.jp/en/STORY.html
Adobe PDF format. Thanks Alex Kido for translate into English.

DX-06 ECLIPSE OGRE Luna & Ray (2 Yo-Yo Set)

These are signature Yo-Yos of Kasumi Hino who is heroine of STORYBOOK.
Gouki Hiura uses ECLIPSE OGRE L&R for 3A.
Each of ECLIPSE OGRE is installed Kasumi’s soul.
Gouki likes(or loves?) kasumi, so he uses ECLIPSE OGRE, and fighting at “Yo-Yo Fist”.
This is very important about our STORYBOOK.

For Yo-Yo ability, ECLIPSE OGRE has Super-Spin-Power!
You can play easy to 3A tricks amd Top-On(Finger-Spin) tricks.
Shinnosuke Maekawa won contest by ECLIPSE OGRE with YoYoJam Lateral Cap.

ECLIPSE OGRE is best Yo-Yo of STURM PANZER ! (June.2014 now)


(form our official web)
http://sturm-panzer.jp/images/kasumi01.jpghttp://sturm-panzer.jp/images/gouki01.jpg

Age: 29 Height: 156cm Blood type: O Yo-Yo: She is not a player of Yo-Yo Fist Play style: Commander of Team STURM PANZER Special Moves: Spider Baby

Kasumi is an engineer of the defense contractor “Marshal Industry”.
One of the developers of “Bio-Spinner System”
that is directly connected to the brain and Yo-Yo.
In 2013, she was tasked with maintenance of STEALTH OGRE.
After that, Kasumi recruited Kyoshiro, Reita and Gouki who is a high school classmate.
ECLIPSE OGRE that Gouki uses is her proprietary.

Kasumi to do the only thing necessary to herself.
Feel the coldness of beauty, but she is friendly personality.

Age: 29 Height: 155cm Blood type: AB Yo-Yo: ECLIPSE OGRE Luna & Ray Play style: 2-handed string trick Special Moves: Eclipse Driver

Kasumi & Gouki, they were clasmates of high school. After the “STEALTH OGRE-Incident”,
She has developed ECLIPSE OGRE Luna & Ray.
In order to conquer the world by using
the Bio-Spinner System of ECLIPSE OGRE,
she teamed up with him.

He has the strongest power and the fastest speed until the battery on ECLIPSE OGRE gets
no remaining. But defense is very weak
as a piece of paper.

Why does the color of his wristband and sneakers same as ECLIPSE OGRE ?
Because she confirm whether left side or right side of his body is active.
ECLIPSE OGRE is in control by her always.
He is “fragile human” if she is absent.

Moment of “ECLIPSE”, Kasumi & Gouki intersects as the Sun & the Moon,
they will release the power of miracle to overturn the world !

Thanks for peaple read and comment to this review!

I would liket to contact for Andre about…


#16

Thanks for commenting on my review.

I agree about size D bearings. I think there is a lot of potential for D bearings especially when combined with extreme rim weighting in bi-metal yo-yos. I hope to see more D-bearing yo-yos enter the market, from Sturm Panzer, and from other companies as well. I also hope you will be able to sell your yo-yos here. I think some of them might have patent issues with Yoyojam, due to the over-the-rim brass rings, but the Leo Sniper models do not conflict with that patent.


#17

Have you tried the Pyro Strider?


#18

No, it looks interesting but I can’t find it anywhere, except the outlet version, which I wouldn’t want. Do you know anywhere that has them in stock (PM me)?


#19

Nope, sorry. I wanted one too.


#20

I’ve thrown a D-Strider around, and while I thought it was good, I didn’t get as much of a kick out of it as I did some of the other YYJk line-up.